As I assess this posting, it occurred to me that I shouldn't have used horror in the title, for these two depicted eruptions are almost trivial relative to the truly great ones. As for example:
- The 1980 Mount St. Helens explosion, while only producing around one cubic kilometer of material, about one-fourth of a cubic mile, was nevertheless much more severe than Kilauea and Mount Ontake. Well, actually, I did some research, and it turns out that in 31 years, Kilauea has produced about one cubic mile of lava, so I guess, this is not inconsequential.
- The 1815 eruption of Mount Tambora on what is now Indonesia emitted 160 cubic kilometers, and caused global cooling.
- In 1783 Laki on Iceland erupted, and killed 6 million people, including a million in Japan (from famine), but less than 10,000 on the island.
- Between 1650 and 1500 BC, Santorini (today to the right) in the Mediterranean destroyed the Minoan civilization, and cause famine in China, leading to the collapse of the Xia dynasty.
- Around 70,000 years ago, Lake Toba (over a volcano), also Indonesia, had an eruption that, it is said, killed most of humanity, leaving, perhaps 3,000 humans alive.
- How they get this info should be interesting, but 132 million years ago, when Africa and South American had not yet separated, there was an eruption of 8,600 cubic kilometers.